Thursday, 23 November 2006
The opener to this comedy starring Sharon Horgan was too dark to be enjoyable: there was so much pain. But there were enough funny lines to make it worth sticking with, especially as Horgan's Donna has dumped her dull fiancé and good times are ahead in Penge. Maybe.
What was good about it?
• It was brave to open up with such miserable black comedy, as Donna realised it was not a brilliant idea to marry the dull Karl (Cavan Clerkin), who we first encountered being masturbated by a bored Donna (who didn't realise when he'd finished) and cleaning himself up with a leaf from the cheeseplant.
• Donna's wonderful hen-night. Crazy friends Karen and Louise had suggested a spit roast with Jamal and Kevin, but Donna went ahead with awful matron-of-honour/baby bore Tanya's night at the bingo.
• When timid pal Karen (Tanya Franks) tells Donna that Karl is dependable, rough old Louise (Rebekah Staton) interjects: "Terry Wogan's dependable but you wouldn't want him blowing his muck inside you every night."
• The pre-wedding meal at Jumpin' Joes, somewhat wrecked by the announcement that the wedding was off. Mouthy mother-in-law Margaret, armed with bread rolls, pursues a fleeing Donna outside. "My son has more dignity than..." she roars, just as Karl comes crawling out on his knees. One of the many marvellous cringeworthy moments in the show.
• Donna's decision to move in with Karen and Louise in their "spare room... aka the shit room."
What was bad about it?
• The grim picture of relationships and friendships.
• Generally, Pulling was inventive and fresh but there was still a slight reliance on Victoria Woodyish lines such as "There's a salad bar – with croutons."
Red Rock: Much more than a daytime soap
Contributed by Colin Mc Mahon The world of soap can be a fickle place. While the Big Three may still rule the ratings on their respective...
Comedy reboots: Never go back
Contributed by Deborah Shrewsbury So something worrying occurred last week. Images of the new Porridge remake were circulated around t...
Boy Meets Girl: A welcome return?
Contributed by Matt Donnelly It's great when a TV comedy can come out of nowhere and surprise you and that's exactly what Boy Mee...
In the Flesh: Why we should be shouting about this more
Amid the tremendous bevy of high quality programmes delivered over the past few months – Prey , Happy Valley , From There to Here ...
Fleabag: modern life is rubbish is BBC3's newest comedy.
Contributed by Colin Mc Mahon Greedy. Perverted. Selfish. Apathetic. Cynical. Depraved. Just some of the adjectives that the titular F...
What to Expect from The Lady Vanishes
Sunday night has long been the home of period drama on BBC One with recent examples being Upstairs Downstairs and Call the Midwife. Thi...
Desert Island Dramas: Gary's picks
So, imagine you were marooned on a desert island. You've got basic provisions which naturally includes a television. Which ten dramas...
The Secret Agent: Exciting Sunday night drama
Contributed by Phil Wilkinson-Jones With everything that’s going on the world at the moment, it would be pretty brave to commission a ser...